Mary Emmalyn "Lyn" (Murphree) Smith
1928 - 2020
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Mary Emmalyn 'Lyn' Murphree Smith was born April 29, 1928 in Birmingham, Alabama and passed away on July 28, 2020 in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. Emmalyn was preceded in death by her husband, Larry Glenn Smith, Sr., her parents, Emma Lucile Hanes and William Candler Murphree, family members, Gay Hamilton Smith (daughter-in law), Celia Murphree Anderson (sister), Bill Anderson (brother-in-law) and a host of aunts, uncles, and cousins. Emmalyn grew up in the Hanes family, a fun-loving extended family in Birmingham, Alabama where she was known to them as "Mamie".
Emmalyn is survived by her children Cynthia Lynn Smith (Panama City, Florida), Larry Glenn Smith, Jr. (Panama City, Florida), and Celia Dell Rudolph, 'Roy' (Muscle Shoals, Alabama). Her surviving grandchildren are Lindsey Smith (Austin, Texas), Cameron Smith 'Racheal' (Milton, Florida), Rory Rudolph 'Amee' (Madison, Alabama), Glenn Rudolph 'Karen' (Signal Mountain, Tennessee), and Joseph Rudolph (Muscle Shoals, Alabama). Emmalyn is also survived by great-grandchildren Grady Smith, Jonah Rudolph, Bailey Rudolph, Rinley Rudolph, and numerous beloved cousins, nieces and nephews.
Emmalyn graduated from Woodlawn High School in 1946. Fourteen years and three children later, she graduated from Florida State University with a degree in physical education/science. While on a youth choir trip with the Stockholm Methodist Church from Birmingham, Alabama, the eighteen-year-old Emmalyn met her Prince Charming, Larry. Emmalyn and Larry had a whirlwind romance that summer, then later courted and married when they were both students at the University of Alabama where Emmalyn was a Phi Mu. Emmalyn became a school teacher and taught at Springfield Elementary in Springfield, Florida; Hutchison Beach Elementary, Panama City Beach, Florida; Dover Shores Elementary in Orlando, Florida and Cobb Middle School in Tallahassee, Florida. Meantime, Larry became an attorney and a respected Florida Judge for 14th Judicial Circuit and the Florida First District Court of Appeals.
Emmalyn loved music. She was proud of her Irish heritage through the Murphree side of her family. Her Irish roots influenced her love of Celtic music and dancing. Emmalyn learned to play the violin in elementary school and continued to play throughout her life. Emmalyn supported the Orchestra of St. Andrew Bay, Panama City POPS Orchestra, and the Panama City Music Association. She especially enjoyed playing with her dear friends in the string quartet, Spring Tide Ensemble. She also sang with Faire Ladies and played in the handbell choir at Panama City First United Methodist Church.
Emmalyn loved traveling with Larry and combined with her keen eye for photography, she captured an abundance of awe-inspiring photos from the continents of North America, Europe, and Asia. These photographs are cherished and serve as a lasting legacy of her love for different people and cultures from around the world.
Emmalyn had a love for nature and the outdoors that she instilled in her children and grandchildren. She enjoyed engaging in many outdoor activities such as bicycling, hiking, snow-skiing, water-skiing, swimming, snorkeling, horseback riding and even roller blading with her grandchildren. Emmalyn swam with dolphins for her 75th birthday. Camping with her family was also one of her favorite past times and camped in the Smokey and the Rocky Mountains with the family on numerous occasions.
Emmalyn was a member of the Bay County Historical Society, St. Andrews Bay Yacht Club, Petit Point, Woman's Club of Panama City, Democratic Women's Club, Audubon Society and also Friends of St. Andrew State Park, where she was active with Nature's Gallery. After retiring from school teaching, Emmalyn volunteered at St. Marks Wild Life Refuge where she was deeply involved in the education outreach program for students about Mission San Luis. She was a member of the First United Methodist Church of Panama City since 1948. She dearly loved her Sunday school class and was active in the United Methodist Women.
Emmalyn was gifted in organizing, directing, and participating in civic, cultural, social and faith-based events for various groups in Panama City and the surrounding area. She was a spectacular hostess, frequently entertaining family and friends in her home. Whether she was entertaining for the holidays or for just any excuse to "get together", she deeply, unselfishly, and joyfully loved to serve others.
For the past few years, "Ms. Lyn" has been attended to by special caregivers in Panama City, Florida and in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. Their love, attention and devotion improved her quality of life; for that the family will be forever grateful. And a very special thanks to Dr. Aaron Karr and Hospice of the Shoals. Your guidance and care were exceptional, and your prayers were especially coveted during this time.
Emmalyn's extraordinarily kind heart and loving nature will be missed by all those who knew her, loved her, and were impacted by her life.
A private family service will be held on Friday, July 31, at Kent-Forrest Lawn Cemetery, with Wilson Funeral Home arranging. Pallbearers are Cameron Smith, Rory Rudolph, Glenn Rudolph, Joseph Rudolph, Roy Rudolph, and Joe Rudolph. The family gracefully requests that in lieu of flowers, those desiring may make contribution to Panama City First United Methodist Church, Friends of St. Andrews State Park, or the Mission of San Luis Historical Museum.
Wilson Funeral Home
Family Owned Since 1911
214 Airport Road
Panama City, Fla.
850-785-5272

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Published in Panama City News Herald from Jul. 31 to Aug. 1, 2020.
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